Salvador Ramos († 18) was able to hide in a classroom at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde (US state of Texas) for 48 minutes while 19 police officers were waiting in front of the door for special forces – a serious mistake by the officers.
Steven McCraw, head of the Texas National Security Agency, had to concede that. “It was the wrong decision. Period,” McCraw said at a news conference. “There is no excuse for that.”
Because while the police officers were waiting outside the door on Tuesday, the killer shot around in the classroom. How many children and teachers could have been saved if officials had intervened earlier is unclear. One thing is certain: at 12:16 p.m., a student who was trapped in the classroom said that eight to nine students were still alive there. About a quarter of an hour later, Ramos was shot. His killing spree claimed the lives of 19 children and two teachers. The killer had previously shot his grandmother in the face.
► Another serious glitch: According to their own statements, the police also had problems opening the door and even had to organize a school employee with a key.
The parents of the school children are stunned by the hesitation of the police. Video released Tuesday shows them begging and yelling at police officers stationed outside the school to storm the building and arrest the gunman. Officials even fix upset people on the ground.
“I told one of the officers myself if they don’t want to go in, lend me a gun and a vest and I’ll go in and sort it out myself,” Victor Luna told CNN. His son Jayden survived the massacre.
► Jacinto Cazares, whose daughter was killed in the bloodbath, told broadcaster ABC: “There were at least 40 police officers armed to the teeth, but they didn’t fucking do anything until it was way too late.” The angry father continued : “The situation could have been over quickly if they had had better tactical training.”
Killer’s father: “He should have shot just me”
Salvador Ramos, the gunman’s father, has apologized to the parents of the children killed. “I just want people to know that I’m sorry for what my son did,” the 42-year-old told Daily Beast. The relationship with his son is not the best, according to Ramos. This is also one of the reasons why Ramos Junior took up arms. The father about his son who ran amok: “It would have been better if he had just shot me.”
Instead, the Uvalde school massacre became the double bloodiest killing spree in US history. Only the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Connecticut killed more. At that time, the perpetrator shot 28 people, 20 of whom were first graders.